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Consolidated "Customs and Immigration at LAX" thread

Consolidated "Customs and Immigration at LAX" thread

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Old Jan 26, 13, 1:21 pm
  #136  
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Thanks for helping the OP. I'll move this to the Los Angeles Forum as this is not a UA topic.

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Old Jan 26, 13, 1:52 pm
  #137  
 
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As people have said, you are almost certainly OK unless your incoming flight is significantly delayed. Plus, I assume your flights are already booked, so no point worrying about it now.
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Old Mar 20, 13, 6:01 pm
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Any experience with customs and immigration times at T7 at around 11AM? I am booked on a United Express flight from YLW arriving 11:07AM, connecting to an Air China flight at 1:20PM from T2.
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Old Mar 20, 13, 6:36 pm
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Originally Posted by quickcanuck View Post
Any experience with customs and immigration times at T7 at around 11AM? I am booked on a United Express flight from YLW arriving 11:07AM, connecting to an Air China flight at 1:20PM from T2.
What won't be predictable are other UA Intl arrivals and their sequence: 840 B744 SYD, 801 B772 NRT, and 293 A320 MEX. If one or more big jets arrive just ahead of you, the line could be long. And long-haul arrival times cannot be accurately predicted due to weather/wind and especially UA's ongoing mechanical nightmare.

On the T2 side, it will also depend on the college and grade school season. CA can't seem to maintain more than 11 flights a week, so without school traffic you can easily be re-accommodated on the red-eye flight. But if it's during the period after schools end, they'll be full.
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Old Mar 23, 13, 5:19 am
  #140  
 
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Having done an international arrival via T6/T7 at LAX 3 times in the last year -- here are my observations.

This is absolutely THE WORST CBP processing area in the US. It is a shameful way to greet people coming in from Australia and the far East where their customs facilities are modern and well organized. The facility, much like the terminals it sits below, is pitiful and needs to be condemned.

There is absolutely no way that fire code regulations are being followed when 1 widebody full of people are in there -- let alone three (!) as was the case one time last year when I went through. In that particular situation (May 2012) -- the room was packed full so that nobody could move. According to LAX airport authority, the airlines are supposed to provide staff to direct people to lines, etc. To date I have never seen a staff member (eventually a UA guy did show up in May 2012, after the room was jammed to the gills.)

There are only three ways you will make this:
* If YLW is a US preclear airport -- in which case you just walk off the plane
* If you have Global Entry and check no bags (or have priority baggage)
* Some kind of delay with your Air China flight

Keep in mind that you will have to walk to T2 -- which is about a 10 minute walk.

If you keep your existing flights -- good luck! You're gonna need it.

-- Dan

Edit: Most international flights close 2 hrs prior to departure, perhaps 1.5 hours if you're lucky. Given that time frame, you have anywhere from 13 minutes to 43 minutes to clear immigration, customs, walk to T2 and check in. The walk to TBIT is a good 10 minutes, leaving you with only 33 minutes to clear immigration/customs. Very, very, very tight.

Edit #2: Change TBIT to T2, his flight departs from T2.

Last edited by debracey; Mar 23, 13 at 5:46 am
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Old Mar 23, 13, 2:10 pm
  #141  
 
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Hey

I am flying into LAX TBIT on BA279 from London Heathrow, arriving at 1255hrs local time.

Is this peak time for arrivals? I have a connecting domestic flight that is scheduled to depart out of Terminal 4 two hours later...

Will I make it? And are the passport control lines horrendous at that time of the day? Non US/Canadian passport holder.
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Old Mar 26, 13, 1:25 pm
  #142  
 
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Originally Posted by EK029 View Post
Hey

I am flying into LAX TBIT on BA279 from London Heathrow, arriving at 1255hrs local time.

Is this peak time for arrivals? I have a connecting domestic flight that is scheduled to depart out of Terminal 4 two hours later...

Will I make it? And are the passport control lines horrendous at that time of the day? Non US/Canadian passport holder.
Mid day is fairly busy at TBIT with several wide body arrivals from Europe and north Asia.

The general rule of thumb for doing international to domestic transfer at LAX is 2.5 hours minimum if you are in the same terminal or another terminal on the same side of the horseshoe (e.g. TBIT to T4, T2 to T1). 3 hours if it involves change or terminal on the other side of the horseshoe (e.g. T2 to T6, TBIT to T1).

You'll need about 60 to 90 minutes to complete the immigration and custom process at TBIT. And probably another 20~30 minutes to check in at T4 and clear security.

I would say 2 hours is cutting it close but you can probably make it if you have BA/One World status and just carry on bags. T4 is a very short walk from TBIT once you exit the custom area to curb side (about 50 meters to the right). Security line at T4 should be moderate but it would help a lot if you have One World status to get you to the front of the line.

Is your connecting flight on the same ticket/PRN as your LHR-LAX flight? And where to? If it is on the same ticket, most likely AA will hold your departure flight for a few minutes until you show up. But I would investigate if there is a later flight on AA to your final destination.

Last edited by bzcat; Mar 26, 13 at 1:31 pm
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Old Mar 26, 13, 9:57 pm
  #143  
 
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Originally Posted by debracey View Post
Having done an international arrival via T6/T7 at LAX 3 times in the last year -- here are my observations.

This is absolutely THE WORST CBP processing area in the US. It is a shameful way to greet people coming in from Australia and the far East where their customs facilities are modern and well organized. The facility, much like the terminals it sits below, is pitiful and needs to be condemned.

There is absolutely no way that fire code regulations are being followed when 1 widebody full of people are in there -- let alone three (!) as was the case one time last year when I went through. In that particular situation (May 2012) -- the room was packed full so that nobody could move. According to LAX airport authority, the airlines are supposed to provide staff to direct people to lines, etc. To date I have never seen a staff member (eventually a UA guy did show up in May 2012, after the room was jammed to the gills.)

There are only three ways you will make this:
* If YLW is a US preclear airport -- in which case you just walk off the plane
* If you have Global Entry and check no bags (or have priority baggage)
* Some kind of delay with your Air China flight

Keep in mind that you will have to walk to T2 -- which is about a 10 minute walk.

If you keep your existing flights -- good luck! You're gonna need it.

-- Dan

Edit: Most international flights close 2 hrs prior to departure, perhaps 1.5 hours if you're lucky. Given that time frame, you have anywhere from 13 minutes to 43 minutes to clear immigration, customs, walk to T2 and check in. The walk to TBIT is a good 10 minutes, leaving you with only 33 minutes to clear immigration/customs. Very, very, very tight.

Edit #2: Change TBIT to T2, his flight departs from T2.
Thanks for the feedback. I am flying UA in J and CA in F so I'm hoping that will let me be one of the first off the UA flight, and if it is on time it should come in before the wide bodies start to arrive at around 11:30. Also, since this all on one ticket should I not be able to check in to my destination (PEK) when I check in with UA in YLW, and therefore avoid the international checkin deadline?
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Old Mar 26, 13, 11:04 pm
  #144  
 
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Originally Posted by quickcanuck View Post
Thanks for the feedback. I am flying UA in J and CA in F so I'm hoping that will let me be one of the first off the UA flight, and if it is on time it should come in before the wide bodies start to arrive at around 11:30. Also, since this all on one ticket should I not be able to check in to my destination (PEK) when I check in with UA in YLW, and therefore avoid the international checkin deadline?
It looks like the Kelowna flight comes in after the Sydney flight but before the Tokyo flight. Unfortunately, it doesn't appear that YLW has preclearance in Canada so you'll have to go through at LAX. You'll then be behind the 747 passengers in the immigration line.
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Old Mar 31, 13, 2:51 pm
  #145  
 
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I'm flying into TBIT with my 77 year old mother (on BA) with a 2.5 hour connection to Southwest.

Seems likes it's far too tight having read the above. We are flying in F, and I have booked a wheelchair for her as she is not very mobile. If I recall from last time, if you walk off the plane to the chair waiting on the bridge, they don't keep you on until everyone has got off - is that correct? Is there a separate immigration line that they wheel her through - she doesn't mind waiting in line as long as she is not standing.

think I may need to change the connecting flight to allow more time.
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Old May 15, 13, 11:28 am
  #146  
 
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how busy is imigration likley to be at T2 -7.45pm

ive seen the comments on the forum about some folk being kept on the plane for an extra hour , how would i find out if many other flights are due in at the same time

Last edited by steveo3002; May 15, 13 at 11:36 am
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Old May 15, 13, 1:13 pm
  #147  
 
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You can check the LAX site at: http://www.lawa.org/fsw/default.aspx

Just do a search for Terminal 2 and you can see the scheduled arrivals at any given time in the day.

Remember that domestic flights and Air Canada flights from many Canadian airport pre-clear in Canada so they won't be going through immigration/customs.

When I went through around that time last year (coming in on NZ from LHR), it was pretty busy.
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Old May 15, 13, 1:17 pm
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thanks..im also on air nz from london
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Old May 20, 13, 5:27 am
  #149  
 
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Hi all,

Am I right in understanding that domestic arrivals into LAX (in my case from JFK) have no customs/immigration and I'll simply need to collect my baggage? I'm flying from LAX - SIN at 15:45pm on SQ and was looking to book a United flight that departs JFK 08:30 and arrives LAX 11:40am.

This is probably a bit of overkill, leaving 4hrs from arrival to departure, but I figure if there is a delay or long customs/security lines when checking in for my SQ flight it will leave enough time. Plus hopefully the new StarAlliance lounge will be open by September and I'll be able to pass time there.
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Old May 20, 13, 8:53 am
  #150  
 
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Originally Posted by Arrow29 View Post
Hi all,

Am I right in understanding that domestic arrivals into LAX (in my case from JFK) have no customs/immigration and I'll simply need to collect my baggage? I'm flying from LAX - SIN at 15:45pm on SQ and was looking to book a United flight that departs JFK 08:30 and arrives LAX 11:40am.

This is probably a bit of overkill, leaving 4hrs from arrival to departure, but I figure if there is a delay or long customs/security lines when checking in for my SQ flight it will leave enough time. Plus hopefully the new StarAlliance lounge will be open by September and I'll be able to pass time there.
Correct. No customs/immigration. Just bag collection (if you're not able to check through). You'll surely have to re-clear security as UA's T7 is quite separate from SQ's TBIT.
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